Center for Writers announces upcoming Visiting Writers series


Photo Courtesy of the Center for Writers

Last week, the Center for Writers announced the three writers that will visit the University of Southern Mississippi as a part of the 2021-2022 Visiting Writers Series.

The Visiting Writers Series, maintained by the Partners for the Arts fund, invites nationally acclaimed writers to present their work at Southern Miss and conduct workshops with its students. Some recent visiting writers include Natasha Trethewey, Hanif Abdurraqib, Ben Lerner, Katy Simpson Smith, Ada Limón and Justin Torres. 

Adam Clay, the Director of the Center for Writers, said he was excited to have these incredible writers appear in person once again, as the COVID-19 pandemic prevented a physical series last year. 

“After over a year of Zoom events, we’re really excited and fortunate to host Forrest Gander (the first Visiting Writer) for an in-person event. Gander’s book, ‘Be With’, won the Pulitzer Prize in 2019, and it’s a compelling collection that examines and unpacks grief in the way that only poetry can,” Clay said.

This year’s series will feature three critically acclaimed poets — Forrest Gander, Maria Kuznetsova and Eloisa Amezcua — on Oct. 19, Jan. 27, and April 25, respectively. Each reading will begin at 7 p.m., but only the location of Gander’s reading has been announced. Kuznetsova and Amezcua’s visits will also coincide with Southern Miss’s award-winning literary journal, the Mississippi Review’s, fiftieth anniversary.

“We’re glad to be celebrating [the journal’s anniversary] alongside these innovative and talented writers,” Clay said.

As mentioned before, Forrest Gander will begin the Visiting Writers series on Oct. 19, appearing in the Ogletree House’s Poynter Room at 7 p.m. Gander is a writer and translator, serving as one of the main editors of several anthologies of Hispanic writing. He is the author of more than a dozen books, including ‘Twice Alive’, ‘Be With’ and ‘Core Samples from the World’, and his essays have appeared in The Nation, The Boston Review, and The New York Times Book Review. Gander has also received a number of fellowships for his work, including from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim and the Whiting Foundation.

The other two writers featured, Maria Kuznetsova and Eloisa Amezcua, are equally acclaimed and celebrated. Kuznetsova is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Auburn University, and has had work appear in literary magazines like Slate, The Yale Review, Threepenny Review, Crazyhorse and Catapult. Amezcua, meanwhile, is a MacDowell fellow who has had her work appear in the New York Times Magazine, POETRY, and the Kenyon Review, among others.
The readings are free and open to the public. For more information about this series, visit the Center for Writers website at You can also stop by the Center for Writers in Room 347 in the Liberal Arts Building, or call them for more information at 601-266-5211.